Make your site run faster
1. Get a good hosting
You may not think that this is important, but if you want your site to display really fast you need to get a good hosting. This is the first step in having a fast site, which also translates into more views, which also translates into a better SEO, which finally translates into more sales. (affiliate links below)
There are three hosting companies which i recommend:
- Media Temple:http://mediatemple.net- if you want a premium WordPress hosting which is easy to manage and works pretty well, this is a good choice to host your website on.
- A Small Orange:http://asmallorange.com- this is another good hosting company, which we've used before to host our theme demos on. If you bought this theme you probably liked the speed as well, so i highly recommend ASO to host your themes on (especially the Cloud VPS option).
- WPEngine:http://wpengine.com- definitely not as cheap as the two examples above, but if you really want an incredibly fast website and absolutely no headaches in managing it, WPEngine is the way to go. With it you don’t have to worry about security, caching, updates, etc. Everything is handled by a great theme of professionals ready to help you with everything. You just need to care about your content.
2. Optimize images
Always optimize/compress your jpeg images before uploading them to the server. Large images should be compressed at around 90% image quality and you should also try to limit the use of lossless image files (uncompressed pngs).
3. Use a caching plugin
I can’t recommend enough the necessitiy go good caching. If you use a managed hosting such as WPEngine you don’t need this. But if you are using ASO or MT or any other hosting you need to cache your content. For this purpose, i recommend W3 Total Cache! It’s a great and easy to use plugin, and with only a bit of work you can double your site’s speed.
This is a minimum configuration for the W3 Total Cache plugin:
The W3TC plugin needs a really sensitive touch when you configurate it - most caching plugins do, otherwise they'll just throw errors. To ensure a good speed and maximum compatibility here's what you have to do (these are the settings i'm also using in General Settings):
- Page Cache (enabled - Disk: Enhanced method)
- Minify (enabled but experimental - try minifying the js files only, not css, and if it breaks, just deactivate it)
- Database Cache (this one can be enabled but it might also throw errors in terms of widgets. so if it doesn't work, just deactivate it)
- Object Cache (disabled - do not active this)
- Browser Cache (enabled - this gives you good scores in GTM)
- CDN / CloudFlare (enable only if you know how to configure it)
4. Revolution slider caching
This one is also good and should really be done. You will most likely not use the Revolution Slider on all the pages, so you would want to only insert the scripts which it uses only on pages that you will use the slider on. If you go to the slider settings and on the Global Settings you’ll see a quick guide on how to do this. You basically want to turn Include RevSlider libraries globallyto OFF and then write down the id’s of the pages where you’re actually using the slider in the Pages to include RevSlider libraries field. Don’t forget that your homepage doesn’t have an id, so it should be referenced as homepage. Lastly, choose to put the JS includes in the footer.